THE POCKET MANUAL OF HOMOEOPATHY VETERINARY MEDICINE by RUDDOCK
As our Manual will doubtless fall into the hands of many who are unacquainted with that method of treatment known as the Homoeopathic, we shall briefly advert, by way of introduction, to some of its more prominent features; and at the same time state a few of the advantages which would accrue from its more extended and general adoption. Nor will these remarks be out of place in a Veterinary Guide, since they apply to the treatment of the inferior creatures, as well as to human beings.
The advantages of Homoeopathy are not the exclusive property of man; the irrational animals, happily, share the blessings of this great gift of God to His creatures. The diseases of our domestic animals, which admit of cure, yield to as promptly to Homoeopathic medicines as those of man. There is a close identity between the physical organisations of the rational and irrational creatures, and whatever is capable of raising the physical condition of the former, is also, no doubt, capable of similarly influencing that of the latter.
The cause of humanity, therefore, demands that the mild and merciful measures of Homoeopathy should be substituted for a practice which has long been a byword for whatever is rude, revolting, and barbarous. Our useful domestic animals have too long been in the hands of ignorant and designing men, who, under the pretence of understanding their diseases, inflict nameless tortures upon the helpless brutes; not for the purpose of curing their diseases, nor merely to impress the owners of the animals with the idea that they possess marvellous skill; but mainly with the view of justifying extravagant charges. The treatment of the diseases and accidents of animals should be conducted on principles as humane and scientific as those applied to man; and it is our object to promote these beneficial results.
HOMOEOPATHY is a system of curing all curable diseases, whether in man or the inferior animals, by the agency of small doses of those medicines which, when exhibited in large repeated doses, are capable of producing in the healthy body symptoms similar to those produced by the disease in the sick body. Or the principle may be thus more briefly expressed, –Similia Similibus curantur; that is, like is cured by like.
A little reflection will show the philosophy of this principle. The symptoms which arise in disease are not the disease itself; but are to be regarded, probably, as the efforts of nature, which always exerts itself to exterminate the disease,, and to restore the balance of the system. Every disease develops symptoms peculiar to itself; and the first inquiry of the truly scientific practitioner is, “In what direction is nature working to remove the disease and restore health?”
Having observed the character of nature’s efforts, he then seeks an agent that will call into action the same class of functions which nature is already employing for her own deliverance; and the curative power of this agent depends upon their it possesses of inducing similar symptoms to those developed by nature when suffering from disease. For instance, a person having exposed himself, takes cold, and fever results. The fever cannot be regarded as the cold, seeing that it came after it, but is a phenomenon, or symptom put on by nature in her efforts to remove the condition induced by the cold. Hence 2common sense dictates, that, if we would aid nature in her difficulty, we must act in perfect harmony with her; and not oppose or cripple her appliances.
To borrow a familiar illustration, we must lift just where nature is lifting. She must furnish the indications, and we must second hand efforts, by working in subserviency to her. The great secret of the healing art is to obtain familiarity with the symptomatic phenomena of nature in any disease, and then to become acquainted with the curative properties of the various remedial agents, so as to be able to administer them in harmony with this true guiding principle.
In the instance just referred to, the case of the person suffering from fever, Aconitum would be an appropriate medicine, because Aconitum given to a person in health in repeated doses, would produce feverish symptoms; consequently it acts upon the same class of vital functions that nature has already employed to rid herself on the disease. So in regard to the medicines in the whole Materia Medica; there is a harmony between the two great powers of these substances – their power of producing disease in the human body when administered in large doses, and their power, when given in small doses, of removing similar diseases arising from other causes.